Combat effectiveness – a view from the outside in
Years ago while still in uniform, I was selected to take part in a large training exercise as part of the OPFOR. The exercise was to take place in a high desert setting, not unlike the Afghan mountain areas, and involved a battalion plus hunting down our 12 man “insurgent” unit.
We were up against a battalion of infantry, augmented with a cav scout troop and a company of NATO soldiers. Their sole purpose was to find, capture and/or kill us.
We broke our team into four, three-man cells. We also had a HQ element and two sets of 81mm mortars with organic crews attached. Besides our indirect fire assets, we were armed only with M4 carbines and frag grenades.
Ten days later we were being dressed down for the sin of rendering the battalion "combat ineffective" as well as destroying the TOC and killing most of the staff officers.
All in all I found it to be a useful learning experience. Without violating any OPSEC, let me break down some of the lessons learned…..
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